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April 17, 2019

  • The Toxics Release Inventory database, refreshed annually, has long been the foundation of many a good environmental news story. The latest release is now out, and this week’s TipSheet reminds journalists why the searchable online TRI can be such a valuable reporting tool in tracking toxic dangers.

  • The tale of a failing nation’s climate woes is revealed in a cache of scientific notes hidden in a London attic after their author goes missing. The gripping mystery was unraveled with award-winning skill by journalist Laura Heaton, in our latest “Inside Story” Q&A. Read on and find out the story’s significance for climate adaptation.

April 10, 2019

  • The first state ban on styrofoam food containers makes this a good time to see how things stand with styrofoam in your area, as the controversial plastic draws negative attention for overflowing landfills, causing litter and polluting waters. More, plus story ideas and reporting resources, in this week’s TipSheet.

  • What makes styrofoam good — like its insulating, shock-absorbing qualities that make it suitable for hot coffee cups, coolers, helmets and packing material — is also what makes it bad … for the environment, that is. This month’s Backgrounder looks at the technical and environmental aspects of this long-troubling plastic pollution source.

April 3, 2019

  • Does the military use ecological restoration as a means to “green” over the complex relationship between nature and culture, undermining the impacts of history and warfare? Our latest BookShelf review of the new volume, “Bombs Away: Militarization, Conservation, and Ecological Restoration,” explores one author’s argument that it does.

  • Seemingly healthy foods might not be as healthy as consumers believe. A new list tracking pesticide residue tells a different story, explains this week’s SEJournal TipSheet. Find out what iconic health food is on the “Dirty Dozen” list and which healthy standby makes the “Clean Fifteen.” Plus, the backstory, why pesticide residue matters and resources to report on the issue.

March 27, 2019

  • The Society of Environmental Journalists is backing right-to-know lawsuits brought by journalism groups, and a collaborative press freedom tracker gets new funding. Meanwhile, at the Interior Department, one watchdog group angles for environmental impact statements on ANWR drilling, while others track possible conflicts of interest by the acting secretary. That and more in the latest WatchDog roundup.

  • With flood-ravaged Midwestern states in the news, it’s time to ask whether your own community is ready for the “big one.” This week’s TipSheet offers a 10-point Resiliency Checklist to focus your reporting. Track the vulnerability of infrastructure like drinking water and sewage plants, roads, bridges and levees, the adequacy of flood insurance and much more.

March 20, 2019

  • Drinking water contaminated with PFAS for years has caused worry, even outrage, in local communities affected by the toxic chemicals. Now, a military database may help reporters locate contamination sites. This week’s TipSheet has more on the database, along with tips for evaluating your local PFAS story.

March 13, 2019

  • Hundreds of coal ash ponds and landfills around the United States pollute drinking water supplies, and now a newly released report helps localize the problem for environmental reporters. This week’s TipSheet explores the new data source, provides the back story on coal ash regulation (or lack thereof) and the potential health risks, while offering numerous questions to ask and resources to track down.

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